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Interview: Dana Pratola

What genres do you read most? 

Romance, any sub-genre. For me the romance is always the most interesting part of a story.

Who are your favorite authors, and what makes them special to you? 

I’m a Nora Roberts fan from the beginning. She has a great mind and is so skilled at telling a story in a straight-up, no bs fashion. I sometimes wonder if she shouldn’t be in treatment for some of her ideas, LOL, but then I remember, wait, I have thoughts like that too. She’s also a master at breaking the rules. “No head-hopping” is a major no-no, yet the way she does it…. There’s just no faulting her in my eyes.

How many books have you written, and how many of them have been published?

So far I’ve completed two. LOL, I seem to publish them as I go. But I have about five others in different stages of completion. The first, THE COVERING, was published with Pelican Book Group (White Rose). DESCENDED, as well as the rest of that series, are (and will be) published independently.

Can you tell us what you believe has had the greatest influence on your writing?

God. Not to sound cliché, but He put the desire in me to begin with. Once I realized it was there for a purpose – to bring glory to Him – that’s really all the influence I need. Then there’s Nora. I enjoy her books, and wanting others to enjoy mine in the same way is a huge part of it.

How do you prepare to write a book? Did you do any special research?

I usually start with character studies, piecing together the inhabitants of the story. I keep a file with everything I can think of about that person from the color of their hair to which James Bond is their favorite. I almost always have several scenes in mind and then I work on an Overview, writing scenes, moving them around, then adding everything in between. I research as needed – How does a spot welder work, how long does an oil painting take to dry, what are the effects of Rofinol, etc.

Can you tell us a little about your latest book?

DESCENDED ~ Jett, is the first in a four-part paranormal, inspirational romance series about 4 men who are descended from angels. I know when people hear that, they might be skeptical about my adhering to Biblical fact, but first of all IT’S FICTION, and second, it’s, as one reviewer put it, an “exciting foray into the world of supernatural without compromising a classic Judeo/Christian worldview.” Jett’s story centers on Haven, an artist with amazing ability, who meets Jett, a man with several amazing abilities, LOL. She’s attracted to him, of course, but curious and suspicious about what goes on in his house with the young women in his employ. It’s nothing she would have guessed and probably not what you think either 😉

Did your parents encourage your love for reading and/or writing? If not, where did encouragement come from?

Yes, my parents definitely did. My dad used to bring home boxes of books and read to me every night. Not only was it a great springboard for my own love of reading/writing, but I have such great memories of those books that I’m actually trying to find some of them again to purchase.

How did you study the craft of writing?

Mostly from reading. Also, when I was a kid I would record Star Trek episodes and transcribe them. I learned a lot about writing dialogue from that.

Do you read books on the craft of writing? If so, what are your favorites and why?

The First Five Pages by Noah Lukeman and Self-Editing for Fiction Writers are the only real “craft” books I’ve read. Both are great.

What one piece of advice would you give to a beginning writer?

I give advice everywhere (when it’s asked for) so I always try to use something different. But this is Writing/relationship advice. If you’re not in a serious relationship yet, try to meet someone who loves to read. Not only will it be easier for them to understand what you’re trying to accomplish, but even if they don’t, they’ll be so busy reading you’ll have time to work 😉 If you’re already in a relationship with a NON-reader, maybe you can give them a nudge by finding books for them about things they love, even TV. Some TV series are out in book form – Monk for one. Maybe if he starts reading something he’s really interested in, it’ll click. The point is, if you’re going to do it seriously, you need time.

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Dana’s Bio: Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior. He is merciful and gracious and loves me beyond all human reason. He’s blessed me with a wonderful husband and three dynamic kids, and we all live in a shoe in New Jersey. (Just seeing who’s paying attention, lol)

God gave me a passion to write Christian Romance. Not the kind with a woman buttoned to the neck and a man daring no more than to hold her hand, but the contemporary kind. These books don’t contain explicit sex scenes, but my characters have real desires, struggles and choices to make.  A lot of the time they make the wrong ones.  No subject is prohibited but good always triumphs.


4 comments on “Interview: Dana Pratola

  1. Dana Pratola
    August 27, 2012

    Thanks for having me, Sheila. Always a pleasure =-D

  2. suzannewilliamsphotography
    August 28, 2012

    Great interview, Dana. I’m married to a non-reader and no book I ever find him will entice him to read. Nor will he ever read anything I write. I have learned to deal with that and share my writing with others who do read. I find it funny about your transcribing Star Trek episodes. Who does that? I’m definitely going to read your book now.

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This entry was posted on August 27, 2012 by in Author Interviews and tagged .

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